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DATE News (chronologically)
08/01/10
f1
Vettel curses Race Stewards
Sebastian Vettel blew another sure win with a mental mistake
Sebastian Vettel was left cursing the stewards after failing to win yet another race from pole, with salt rubbed into the wounds as Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber romped to victory in Hungary.

Only once from seven pole positions this year has Vettel taken the checkered flag and but for a safety car, a dodgy radio and those stewards, he would have improved that statistic at the Hungaroring.

When the safety car was deployed at the end of lap 15, Vettel had built up a cushion of over 10 seconds to Ferrari's Fernando Alonso at the time and seemed set to cruise to the line.

But a piece of the front wing from Vitantonio Liuzzi's Force India was too dangerous for a marshall to retrieve from the middle of the track, bringing the safety car into play.

It caused mayhem, with Vettel himself forced into braking late and cutting across a curb running alongside the pit lane in order to make his stop for tires.

When the safety car came in two laps later - and at that stage he was behind Webber who had not pitted - he was caught napping as he was a considerable distance adrift of the Australian.

Vettel blamed his in-car radio for not working properly, so missing the call the safety car was coming in.

As for the stewards, they determined he had broken the rules as he was more than 10 car lengths behind Webber, leading to the 23-year-old receiving a drive-through penalty.

When Vettel served it soon after, he raised his fists in anger as he drove through the pit lane, and then after stepping out of the car he remonstrated with Herbie Blasch, the FIA's race observer.

The young German was far from happy as he spoke afterwards as he said: "People told me what happened. I don't like it, but I can't change it now.

"At the re-start I was sleeping. I was probably relying too much on the radio, but somewhere in the first stint I lost the radio and I didn't hear anything.

"I don't know how much time I lost, too much. It wasn't acceptable and I paid the penalty.

"When I got the drive-through, I was pretty angry, and I then had to finish the race for 30 laps behind Fernando.

"As I said, I don't understand what happened. This weekend we were not very lucky, and you could argue we did something wrong against the regulations.

"But look at the last race. There was something written in the regulations that wasn't followed and nothing happened.

"This week, you can compare, but we had to pay a very expensive price.

"Obviously I'm very disappointed, otherwise it would have been a walk in the park today and we could have won the race."

Vettel's remark referred to the team orders furor that unfolded in last Sunday's German Grand Prix and the fact no penalty was served during the race, only a 100,000 US dollars fine levied afterwards, although the World Motor Sport Council may yet have a further say.

The positive for Vettel, though, is that he is within 10 points of new leader Webber and six behind Lewis Hamilton, who retired on lap 24 with a rare mechanical failure to his McLaren, in this case the gearbox.

It all meant Webber was given "a bit of a gift," his description of his fourth win this season and the sixth of his career.

Webber added: "It's an incredible day for the team. Another win.

"Although one-two was our goal, we unfortunately didn't get that but still got a big chunk of the points, so it was a good day." Sporting Life

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